Guest post by Claudia from My Adventures Across the World
Israel is like a second home to me. I enjoy the place, I enjoy the vibe, and I enjoy the people. I have many friends that I enjoy hanging out with any time I go, and they always invite me to stay with them.
But I like having my own space and doing my own thing. Each time I end up opting to stay in a hostel, so I can go in and out whenever I want, I am right in the centre of town where all the action is, and I get to meet other travelers too.
I have my favorite hostels in Israel, and I always stay there whenever I visit. Here they are.
Located in the city centre, right off Ha Davidka metro stop, Abraham Hostel in Jerusalem is the perfect location to start exploring and dive head first into the many things to do in Jerusalem. It is a fantastic place to stay and to meet people – whether locals who enjoy hanging out there, or other travelers.
What makes Abraham Hostel Jerusalem a great place to stay, other than its location, is its great lounge/reception area on the ground floor, with couches, a book exchange corner, and a tours desk. The bar and the kitchen are on the first floor. There’s always some event going on – either a concert, a hummus making workshop, a play and, on Friday, the lovely communal Shabbat dinner, where for a real steal guests get to enjoy a delicious home cooked meal and learn more about the local culture.
The hostel has both private rooms and dorms. All dorms have a private bathroom (toilet and separate shower), lockers, and each bunk bed has its own electricity sockets and private light – perfect for those who enjoy reading at night. There’s also shared toilets and showers on each floor.
Staff at the Abraham is incredibly kind and helpful – whether it is to sort out the dorms, help organize transportation and tours or even just assist someone who is sick, they are always available.
Abraham Hostel in Tel Aviv isn’t just the best place to stay in town. It is one of the best places to visit, actually. An old building has been completely refurbished to accommodate rooms and common areas which are stylishly decorated. It is located in Levontin, right next to Rotschild Avenue and close to Allenby, and at walking distance from Karmel Market, Neve Tzedek and Florentin neighborhood and even from the beach.
The reception area on the ground floor has comfortable chairs and couches and it is a perfect to hang out. That’s where the travel help desk is located and where it is possible to rent bikes. There’s also a storage room for people who may be going away for a few days but still want to leave their backpack behind.
The incredibly well equipped kitchen is located right next to the bar, in what is one of the coolest common spaces in a hostel. There is a huge stage, and in fact this regularly is used for concerts and festivals. There are events almost every day – tapas parties, Shabbat dinners, and workshops.
The third floor is where the tv room, the laundry room and the terrace are located. The latter has a great view of the city skyscrapers. Needless to say, hanging out at the terrace at sunset is a must, because seeing the sunset is one of the coolest things to do in Tel Aviv.
The hostel has both dorms (each having their own shower and toilet) and private rooms. The dorms are comfortable. The private rooms are actually very large. They are simple, but spotless.
Breakfast is a great spread of eggs, salads, breads, cereals and what not – in perfect Israeli style.
Again, what makes Abraham Hostel one of the best hostels in Israel is the incredibly kind and helpful staff – from the receptionists to the volunteers to the managers, they are all very kind and helpful.
The Fauzi Azar Inn in Nazareth is more than just a great hostel. It is one of the most interesting places to visit in the city. The hostel is located in the Old City, close to the market and to the Basilica of the Annunciation and right where the Jesus Trail that goes all the way to Capernaum, through Galilee, starts.
The Fauzi Azar actually is a 200 years old Arab mansion, with incredibly high ceilings, a gorgeous internal courtyard, a living room with tall windows and stylish decor. Sitting there feels like going back in time. The guided tour of Nazareth actually starts at the Fauzi Azar – such is the importance the mansion had in local history.
At the Fauzi Azar, there are plain dorms – toilets and showers are located outside the rooms; and beautiful private rooms. There is a well equipped kitchen where traditional cooking classes are regularly offered.
Breakfast, in typical Arab style with salads, zataar (a delicious spread of olive oil and a mixture of dried herbs), eggs, olives and tomatoes, is served on the ground floor.
Claudia Tavani is a former human rights lawyer and academic who abandoned her career to follow a life of travel. When she’s not on the move, she enjoys Sardinia, the gorgeous island where she was born and raised.
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